Tag Archive for 'clergy'

20 Years of Women Priests – Gender Equality in the Church of England

In 1994 the Church of England made an important step towards gender equality. The vote for women to be ordained was passed and the first 32 women priests in Britain were ordained at St Paul’s Cathedral. The ceremony was a milestone for Christian faith across the country, and a long awaited transition into the 21st Century.


Since then the number of female clergy members across the country have been steadily increasing and the number of male clergy members decreasing. Within the next few decades we could be seeing more women than men in dioceses across the UK.


Church Of England Statistics | 


This March marks 20 years since the vote, with a celebration held at the Cathedral on the 3rd of May. Not only will this be an important occasion for women, it will also highlight the upcoming vote in July for women to be bishops. The vote for women bishops was initially rejected in November 2012, following years of debate and controversy on the topic.


One of the first women priests to be ordained in the UK, Canon Philippa Boardman, will be giving a sermon at the celebration. In an interview she explained what it means to be a woman in the Church of England clergy 20 years after she started wearing a dog collar, and why the debate about women in the Church is so important.



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